Leslie has been teaching, publishing, editing and speaking for more than thirty years nationally and internationally.
She speaks at conferences, universities, churches, prisons, and retreats on a number of topics related to her books and essays (a sample here below). If you wish to schedule an appearance, write Leslie directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
CROSSING THE WATERS FROM DOUBT TO FAITH
(1 - 3 day presentation)
What does it really mean to follow Jesus? Using multi-media from her life in fishing in Alaska and her hike around the Sea of Galilee, Leslie takes you across the waters of time and culture to follow along after those first fishermen disciples in Galilee---and to her own life on the waters of Alaska. She’ll highlight some of the most dramatic events of the gospels--and her family’s life in commercial fishing in Alaska---with storms, bursting nets and sea crossings, revealing fresh truths about Jesus and a life of faith. In a time when so many are “unfollowing” Jesus and leaving the Church, Crossing the Waters delivers a refreshing encounter with Jesus and explores what it truly means to “come, follow me.” (Based on Leslie's award-winning Crossing the Waters: Following Jesus through the Storms, the Fish, the Doubt and the Seas )
Your Story Matters: Writing Spiritual Memoir (1 – 3 day workshop)
God’s Word instructs us in many places to “remember” his acts among us, to “declare his glory among the nations,” and to pass on to others what we have witnessed of God in this life: the mysterious, the tragic, the miraculous, the glorious ordinary. How do we accomplish this? In this 1 - 3 day seminar, Leslie will guide participants in this profound means of public witness and spiritual transformation: discovering, writing and sharing our life stories. She’ll present the dynamic writing process she has used as both a writer and a teacher of writing for decades that is both practical and inspiring, from accessing memory to generating ideas to shaping final drafts and beyond.
*Why Your Story Matters
*Discovering and Mapping Your Story
*What Kind of Stories Bring God Glory?
*Practicing the Three Building-Blocks of Story-Making
*Writing as Prayer, Discovery and Response
*Excavating Memory: Freeing the Creator; Educating the Editor
*Telling the Truth of Hard Places and Difficult People
What IS the redemptive story God is writing through your life? Let’s gather and begin!
THE POWER and Paradox of PEACEMAKING
(1hour to - 2 day presentation)
"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God." "As much as it is possible, live at peace with all men." In this contentious and indifferent world, in a politically divided nation, how do we live as peace makers at home, in our churches, in our communities and nation? Personal real-life narratives are braided around the life of Jesus, who lived in a particularly tumultuous time and culture. Through example and paradox, Jesus will show us the way through conflict to the power of peacemaking.
Loving The Wonder Years: living Abundantly and joyfully in the second half of life (1 - 3 days)
As women enter the second half of their lives, they often struggle with an emptying nest, with dying dreams, with a sense of loss, invisibility and limitation, and with fears about aging and the years ahead. Leslie kicks the stuffing out of those fears with humor, sass, and biblical wisdom, enabling us to age honestly, wisely, faithfully, with parties, laughter and deep theology along the way.
Even When No One Listens: The Beautiful Persistence of Serving God
How do we keep on following and serving God in the midst of trials, struggle, and a hostile world? Where do we find the courage to "keep the faith" when all around us it seems people are "unfollowing" Jesus? I'll share part of my own life story through storms and trials, and will follow as well the life of Ezekiel who was called to very hard things: Ezekiel's response to the call and the shocking outcome gives us a remarkable roadmap for us as we engage with apathy, belief and unbelief in our own families and culture.
NEW PSALMS FOR OUR JOURNEY (1 - 3 day retreat/workshop)
The Psalms have been given as God's prayer and song book to the Church. Somehow He has inspired the psalmists to not only rejoice and praise God but also to lament and worry and complain to God! Perhaps we should do the same? Leslie shares a personal and powerful means of entering the scriptures and writing our own songs, prayers and laments, while simultaneously lifting our individual voices and experience into the choral narrative of the Church through the ages.
THE FREEDOM TO FORGIVE
Can we really change the world? Yes, it's possible---through forgiveness. In this intimate 2 hour seminar, Leslie will lead participants through dramatic story, interactive scriptures and journaling exercises that lead toward forgiveness and the healing of broken relationships. (Based on her book, Forgiving Our Fathers and Mothers." )
'Successful' Parenting or Faithful Parenting?: What God's Word Really Says about Raising "Christian Kids"
We all know the statistics (ranging from depressing to despairing) about the numbers of young people leaving the church. We wonder, Is it really possible to impart a lasting faith to our children? And if so, how much of this is God’s work and how much is ours? In this provocative session, Leslie will expose some popular Christian myths and cultural assumptions about transmitting our faith and replace them with truths gained from parents in the scriptures that ultimately free us from pride, failure and fear.
Based on Parenting is Your Highest Calling . . . and Eight Other Myths that Trap Us in Worry and Guilt
Why Parenting is Not Our Highest Calling--and Why This is Terrific Good News for All
When was the last time you heard a sermon on these words from Jesus? “Anyone one who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me . . .” ? Yet these words and Jesus’ summation of the Commandments (“Love God …. Love your neighbor) deliver such good news for mothers! News we all desperately need. We’re all so tempted to make our family our highest calling, which turns out badly for all. Come hear this compelling call to return to our first and highest love. Then, and only then can we love our children rightly and well.
THE MYTH OF THE PERFECT PARENT: OVERCOMING THE FOUR MOST DANGEROUS MYTHS OF PARENTING
In this seminar, Leslie will identify the most dangerous parenting myths, replacing our human-centered notions of parenting with Biblical truths. These truths will free us from the impossible loads of guilt we carry and empower us to raise our children with love, wisdom and grace.
SACRED SUCCESS: A TALE OF TWO WRITERS
If we believe we’ve been called by God to write, what then can we expect from our labors? Through a dramatic retelling of the lives of two biblical “writers,” one a bestseller, the other an utter failure, as well as stories of her own success and disasters, Leslie will share unshakeable secrets toward cultivating a truly "successful" writing life.
Leslie's Speaking Schedule: 2020
Jan. 24,25 Florida: “Your Story Matters: Writing and Living the Truth of Your Life”: CRU, Wycliffe
Feb. 21 - 23 Mt. Hermon, CA The Wonder Years Gathering
April 15 - 18, Grand Rapids, MI: Calvin Festival of Faith and Writing
April 24-27 Texas: Chrysostom Society
July 14 - 20 Harvester Island: The Spirit of Food Retreat
Sept. 1 - 8 Harvester Island Wilderness Workshop w/ Gary Schmidt
Your Story Matters: Finding, Writing and Living the Truth of Your Life
Oct. 16 - 18 Green Lake, WI: The Wonder Years Gathering
Feb. 1, 8 Kodiak (KAMP): Finding Freedom Through Forgiveness
Feb. 22 - 24: Victoria, Texas: Women's Conference: Keynote
Sunday morning sermon:
March 22 - 24, Atlanta, Georgia: “Speak to the Bones: Writing Life Stories”
April 5,6: Homer, Alaska “Loving Well Ladies” Conference: “Following Jesus: Through the Storms, the Doubt and the Seas”
April 7,8 Palmer, Alaska. “Speak to the Bones: Writing Life Stories”
April 26 - 28: Glen Eyrie, Colorado, NavWorld Conference: with Philip Yancey and Leslie Leyland Fields
*TED-style talk: The Power and Paradox of Peacemaking
*Keynote: “Even When No One Listens: The Beautiful Persistence of Serving God”
*”What Does it Mean to be a Successful Parent?”
July 14 - 20: Harvester Island, Alaska, The Spirit of Food Retreat with Dr. Norman Wirzba, Melissa D'Arabian and Leslie
Sept 1 - 8.: Harvester Island, Alaska, The Harvester Island Wilderness Workshop w/ Marilyn MacEntyre
Oct. 4 - 6 Lyon, France: Keynote: Women's Retreat (LifeSprings International)
Oct. 31 - Nov. 3: Lake Michigan Writers' Workshop
Nov. 5,6 Madison, WI: The Upper House
*The Wonder Years Breakfast
*Living an Artful Life
*All-day seminar: “Tell a Better Story: Discovering, Writing and Sharing Your Life Story”
Feb. 13. Cape Town: George Whitefield College
Crossing the Waters from Doubt to Faith
Feb. 14: Cape Town, GWC
*Is Parenting Our Highest Calling?
Feb. 16-18: Cape Town: Creative Writing Workshop
Feb. 20, Stellenboesch, Christ Church
Crossing the Waters from Doubt to Faith
Feb 22-24, Bloemfontaine, South Africa
*Crossing the Waters from Doubt to Faith
*Parenting Seminar: What Are Children “For”?
March 3: Johannesburg, South Africa: Christian Writing Fair:
*Why the World Still Needs Your Story (and how to tell it)
*Overcoming the 7 Terrors Every Writer Faces
March 17, Khyalitsa Township, South Africa, “Parenting with Passion and Grace”
April 12 – 14 Grand Rapids, Michigan Festival of Faith and Writing
*”Do I Have to Be a ‘Christian Writer?’”
*Tribute to Luci Shaw
*Book Launch Reading: The Wonder Years
April 19: Bratislava, Slovakia: New Psalms for the Journey Workshop
April 20: Lunch Forum: Vocation and Faith
April 21: Bratislava: “Crossing the Waters Seminar" 9am -4 pm
April 27: Grenoble, France: Where is God in Our Trials?
May 10: Kodiak, Alaska: Reading: The Wonder Years
April 28 - 29 Lyon, France: The Myth of the Perfect Parent
May 24: Chris Fabry Live! The Wonder Years
The Georgene Rice Show: The Wonder Years
The Debbie Chavez Show: The Wonder Years
Sept. 2 – 9 Harvester Island Wilderness Workshop with Ann Voskamp
Oct. 22 - 29 Ulaanbataar, Mongolia: Teaching in School of Ministry
Parenting Seminar: Parenting in Freedom and Grace